Katya Harmon, 10, was filmed crying with happiness after she discovered her cat Timmy had been brought back to her family’s home in Woking.
According to Cats Protection, 26 per cent of owned cats in the UK are not microchipped.
Katya’s family has had a difficult year, in which her father Perry died of cancer. But her mother, Svitlana Harmon, said Timmy’s return had “brought some light back”.
Ms Harmon said: “I had just taken Katya to school when I received a totally unexpected call from Cats Protection. I had given up hope of ever receiving such a call. Timmy was coming home. It was almost unbelievable.
“I knew that Katya would be overjoyed to see Timmy. That was when I hit on the idea of filming that special moment, to capture Katya’s reaction to finding Timmy hiding on her bed.
“If it wasn’t for that microchip, we wouldn’t have Timmy home with us now. He won’t leave Katya’s side and she is besotted with him.
“We’ve had it hard this year, like so many people… then I had a miracle call from Cats Protection. It really brought some light back into our world.”
Pauline Welch, welfare officer for Cats Protection’s Woking and District Branch, said: “We had a report from a lady who had been feeding a suspected stray cat for a couple of months.
“I went round and scanned him for a microchip, which he had thankfully.”
The charity said it helped reunite 2,500 cats with their owners last year thanks to microchips. It is actively campaigning to make microchipping a legal requirement for cats, as it is for dogs.
Additional reporting by PA